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Mass. firefighter-paramedic dies suddenly

Natick Firefighter-Paramedic Jake John Francis Feeney IV, 30, is remembered as “kind, strong and true” and a “conscientious hard worker”

Zane Razzaq
MetroWest Daily News, Framingham, Mass.

NATICK, Mass. — A Natick firefighter and paramedic died this week in an ‘active duty death’, said the Professional Fire Fighters of Massachusetts and Natick Local 1707 on Thursday.

“The Professional Firefighters of Massachusetts and Natick Local 1707 regret to announce the active duty death of Brother Jake John Francis Feeney IV,” a letter released by the unions said.

The letter did not explain what caused Feeney’s death.

According to his obituary, Feeney, 30, died suddenly on Tuesday in Milton. Born and raised in Milton, he graduated from Milton High School in 2009, before becoming an emergency medical technician with Eascare Ambulance. Later, he graduated from paramedic school with PRO Ambulance in Cambridge where he still worked as a paramedic.

In February, he realized his dream of becoming a firefighter when he graduated from the Massachusetts Firefighting Academy in Springfield. He became one of the Natick Fire Department’s newest members.

He was fluent in French, played the guitar, and loved an occasional fishing trip. In his youth, he played high school football for Milton and youth baseball, hockey, and soccer. Two weeks after graduation, Feeney was on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic, according to his obituary.

“He was passionate about his work helping people. Jake was kind, strong and true to everyone who knew him and to those he didn’t know. Jake was modest, humble and a conscientious hard worker...Jake’s passing leaves a huge hole in our family which can never be filled,” reads his obituary.

Feeney is survived by his mother Sheila Sweeney and her partner Shawn Davis of Milton, his grandmother Mary Sweeney and the late Matthew J. Sweeney Sr. of Dorchester, his aunt Marylou Sweeney and her partner Mary Ellen Palingo of Weymouth, his aunt Dorothy (Dolly) Woods and her husband Tom of Milton, his uncle and godfather Matthew J. Sweeney, Jr, and his wife Jill and cousins Connor and Ryan of Dorchester. Jake is also survived by his father John F. Feeney, III of Dorchester who recently moved to Cape Cod, his grandmother Rita Feeney of Milton, his aunt Donna McLaughlin and her husband Peter of Milton, his aunt Carol McGrath and her husband Larry of Bridgewater and cousins Lauren and Steven McGrath and Julia and Leah McGrath.

He is preceded by his sister Christina Mary Feeney.

“In his short time with us, Jake served with skill and compassion as part of our public safety family. All of our members are feeling his loss deeply. He will be missed. Please keep his family in your thoughts. Rest easy, Jake. We’ve got the watch from here,” the Natick Fire Department wrote on Facebook Thursday.

The wake will be on Sunday from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Thomas Funeral Home, 326 Granite Ave. in Milton, and the funeral will be at 10:30 a.m. on Monday at St. Agatha Church, 432 Adams St. in Milton. The funeral and burial services will be for family, friends, and Natick Fire Department members only at the request of the family. The burial will immediately follow the funeral services at Milton Cemetery, 211 Centre St., Milton.


©2020 MetroWest Daily News, Framingham, Mass.

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